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The K.O. count system

In the range of card counting techniques, the most well-known, in general, are the “balanced” systems, like Hi-Lo, Hi-Opt I and Hi-Opt II, in which there are as many positive cards as negative ones. Because of this, the count comes to zero at the end. On the contrary, the Knock Out card count or K.O. count is an unbalanced card counting system; you will not finish at zero when you have finished counting the Blackjack table’s shoe.

Pretty similar to Hi-Low

Invented by Olaf Vancura and Ken Fuchs, the K.O. count system is described in the book Knock-Out Blackjack. It begins with the Hi-Lo card counting system, but adds a weak card – the 7. Instead of having a value of zero, the 7 counts as +1. As a result, the end of a count of a 52 card shoe will bring you to 4. In K.O. count, the Ace and the ten value cards – King, Queen, Jack, and 10 – count as -1. The 8 and 9 count as 0; and the 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 count as 1.

The advantage of K.O. count

The unbalanced nature of this system is intentional to avoid the true count conversions of other methods. It proves to be very difficult to count cards while trying to convert the results in order to weight them according to the number of decks contained in the Blackjack table’s shoe. This is made even more complex by the fact that casinos are, in general, places full of noise and excitement. The K.O. count system was created precisely to make card counting simpler and easier for players.

If you have already tried out the Hi-Lo count card counting system, and you have had trouble doing the counting and conversion simultaneously, the K.O. count method proves to be an excellent solution for simplifying your Blackjack games for you. Faced with the house, the advantages that you can draw from these two systems are similar, so you don’t have to worry about winning less with the K.O. count. The latter proves to be the ideal introductory technique to card counting in Blackjack.